Guitar Pickup Review

Suhr DSH+ Bridge Humbucker

The Suhr DSH+ humbucker is one that I’ve been wanting to try for a while.  I definitely like the SSH+ a lot. But I am curious as to what the SSH+ will be like with a bit taming of the high end.  That is where the DSH+ comes in.

Suhr DSH+ White
Suhr DSH+ White

The Suhr naming structure may or may not be common knowledge, so if the experts can just skip over this part.  LOL!  The names are frequently the description of the pickup.  DSH translates to Double Screw Hot.  Two rows of filister screws.  SSH would be Single Screw Hot.  One row of filister and one row of slugs.  The plus sign in DSH+ means it is hotter than the regular DSH.

The DSH+ is generally an option to be requested on a Suhr guitar or bought as a stand-alone purchase.  Which is to say that it’s not currently a stock option on a Suhr guitar.  One of the groovy things about Suhr pickups is the ‘triangle’ or ‘delta’ mounting tabs.  Added to that, they have the same baseplate dimensions for standard or f-space poles.  As such, they can fit just fine in some of those hard-to-fit guitars we’ve all seen.

Installation

For this evaluation, I paired it with a Thornbucker neck to keep everything in the Suhr family.  I’m going with a double cut 2-humbucker body with maple neck and rosewood fingerboard. The guitar has 09-42 strings and is in E standard tuning.  Hardware includes a German Floyd Rose double-locking tremolo system. The 4-con wiring on Suhr humbucker allowed me to wire each pickup to it’s own mini toggle for series/split/parallel operation.

During the install process, I take advantage of the opportunity to hit the frets with the Lizard Spit Fret Polishing System and to apply Lizard Spit Slick Nutz to relevant friction points.

Evaluation

The SSH+ is standard equipment in most Suhr Modern and Standard models, so you’ll see it mentioned here and there as a reference point.

Right away, the DSH+ is a little bit punchier and a little bit throatier than the SSH+.  Lows have a bit more presence, while highs are slightly more refined.  If you like the output of the SSH+ but want a little less edge, the DSH+ is your huckleberry.  From what I remember of the Aldrich bridge humbucker, I might even put the DSH+ between the SSH+ and the Aldrich.

Suhr DSH+ Zebra
Suhr DSH+ Zebra

One of the characteristics of Suhr pickups that keeps me coming back is the transparency.  Some call it clarity or refer to it as being more open-sounding.  Blend that with extra serving of beef and you have yourself a really solid humbucker.  You have your note separation with a bit of thunder mixed in for good measure.

Dirty amp tones are gonna hit you in the chest with authority.  Riffs are powerful and lead work is in your face.  The DSH+ is a harmonically rich offering, so it’s all good when it comes to your Van Halen and your Vai and your Dime squeals.  The clean amp tones are where consideration is necessary for how powerful the DSH+ can be.  Look to split or parallel wiring and tweaking your volume know and maybe even working those options together to dial in a nice chimey character with just enough glass.

Demo

The closest I can find is a demo of the Suhr Modern Terra model guitar. This guitar has the DSH in the bridge, which is a little less hot than the DSH+.

Suhr Modern Terra Limited Edition 2021-2022

I’d really dig to be able to throw down a video or an audio example of the DSH+. But there are no official Suhr sample of it to be found.  So, John, my man… you think you can throw something into the hands of Pete Thorn or Steve Stevens long enough to dish out some groovy smokin’ hard pipe-hittin’ DSH+ tones for the masses?

Specs:

Series – 17.292 K
Inductance – 8.106 H
Split N – 8.661 K
Split S – 8.67 K
Parallel – 4.325 K
Magnet – Alnico 5

The DSH+ is gonna be great for you if you’re looking for hard rock, shred, metalcore, progressive rock, doom, thrash, death metal, garage, punk, fusion, 80s metal, grunge, heavy rock, djent, nu-metal, progressive metal, blues rock, alt rock, hardcore, and tech metal styles. It is available in 50mm or 53mm spacing with black, parchment, white, zebra, or reverse zebra bobbins.

For reference, this Suhr DSH+ Bridge humbucker pickup evaluation was conducted with a Fractal Axe-Fx II XL+ featuring Celestion Impluse Responses and Fractal MFC-101 MIDI Foot Controller.  In addition, real cabs in use are Marshall 1960BMojotone British, and Peavey 6505 cabs loaded with Celestion Classic Series Vintage 30s and Classic Series G12M Greenbacks.

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